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In time of need
Pain sorrow loss

Console Encourage
Lighten the load

Love’s touch
Steady and true

Faithful presence

From “My Words to Live By” c-a allen


Reflections on Traffic Lights

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• Always be alert when approaching crossroads
• Knowing when to go and when to stop aids activities
• Pause to assess the landscape before proceeding
• We all need to slow down in order to avoid accidents
• Waiting for changes can be difficult
• Sometimes the change goes smoothly and without pause
• Collisions may occur when we are impatient or distracted
• Regular maintenance helps ensure continued health and best service
• Obeying traffic signals is important for interaction with others



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Oh Lord, when I worry
And my world is spinning ‘round
Please cease the racing spirals
That try to make me fall

I know You say to trust You
That in troubles I’m not alone
But like great gobbling monsters
They rise to tear me down

So, Lord, when I worry
When I fret that all’s not well
Please touch me with your presence
And strike those monsters down

Remind me just to trust You
Discover calm amidst those storms
For in Your quiet presence
There’s strength to carry on


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“Ouch! That hurt!” …Whether a scrapped knee or elbow or a stumped toe, childhood memories for this tomboy keeping up with three brothers included the inevitable mishaps. My mother’s gentle, but no nonsense, ministrations with band-aide or ice packs taught me of compassion and strength. Care and concern was mixed with encouragement that all would be well.

Jesus modeled this gentleness and strength throughout his ministry. He reached out to heal and to provide for those who came to him. He also called them to show by their good life that their works were done with “gentleness born of wisdom.” *

Wow! That’s not so easy! We have all had our rather “unwise” moments when we’ve blurted out things without considering their consequences. “Bite your tongue,” people used to say when less than thoughtful words came out, or “I had to bite my tongue to keep from saying what I was thinking!” In listening to people, especially in news reports on television, it seems many are talking at once with little respect for others. Self-control and kindness are often disregarded… Our words and actions do not always reflect wisdom or a gentle spirit!

It can be tough to say or do things in a gentle (and more positive) manner, rather than just from a “self” focus. It seems significant that when Paul told the Galatians about the “fruit of the Spirit,” the last two fruits he listed were gentleness and self-control… We have to work at it, but the results are worth it.

One thing that helps me, is to take time to rest and de-stress as regularly as possible. It’s so much harder to respond in positive ways when I’m overly tired! Sometimes I need to remove myself from a situation or conversation, if only briefly, so I can calm down or take time to think first. We all learn what works best for us.

Gentleness? God grant me a gentle heart, so I can serve You better!

*James 3:13

In the Quiet of Your Presence

Grand Tetons_Sep 2017_by Kathy Owen

Photo by Kathy Owen
Grand Tetons

In the quiet of your presence
Come sit with me
My companion
During loss and distress
Pain anger despair

In the quiet of your presence
The touch of your hand
A welcoming shoulder
For tears grief
For memories laughter

In the quiet of your presence
Great storms tumult
And pounding waves
In fear anguish
Drawn to your haven

In the quiet of your presence
Oh whys and what nows
No and no and no
Reef of danger or
Rock of safety

In the quiet of your presence
Blessed stillness
By shared tears
Battered and worn

In the quiet of your presence
Oh God!
Hold me
For I am bereft
Cold lost alone

In the quiet of your presence

Reflections on Coffee Grounds


• Coffee comes from carefully tended and ground seeds
• This tending brings forth the flavor of the coffee bean
• We all benefit when we care for each other
• Mutual caring develops the gifts we have been given
• As we ripen we are made ready for use
• Roasting prepares us for the future
• To bring out the best flavor we are ground exactly
• Ground beans have great potential
• The wash of water brings out good and needed qualities
• Enjoyment and satisfaction come from well brewed cups
• Old experienced grounds have much to offer
• We owe much to the Tender of the beans